All of these Jae Crowder to the Bucks rumors seem to create more questions than answers.
Even a casual Bucks fan who watches a few games here or there knows the Bucks have a reported interest in Jae Crowder, a forward from the Phoenix Suns. (Crowder has yet to play this year.) He fits the PJ Tucker “dawg” mode that the team exhibited in their 2021 NBA Championship season. Crowder is an experienced defender and played at Marquette. He was the Big East Player of the Year his senior season! We all assume he LOVES Milwaukee! (Hey, I love Milwaukee!)
It all seems to make so much sense! Why hasn’t this happened yet?
Maybe it is the trades we ALL seem to know about end up being the ones that never happen? Or maybe the Bucks don’t have any real reason to trade. What would the Bucks need to give up? Why would they give up anything?
Bucks “trading chips”
The pieces the Bucks would give up (rumored) consist of Grayson Allen, Jordan Nwora and George Hill. (Poor George Hill- he has been traded eight times!) Those are pieces fans don’t tend to overly value. Of course only the Bucks brass of GM Jon Horst, Assistant GM Milt Newton, Head Coach Mike Budenholzer and even the guys who bring out the buffets know the value the franchise ascribes to Allen, Hill a]nd Nwora. At this point, they must value them more than the casual fan. George Hill is a master at not turning the ball over. Nwora and Allen are valued shooters and scorers. They are not bad players.
Maybe it is a timing issue?
The NBA trading deadline is February 9th. There is still a ton of season left. But what’s the hold up? Is this just a matter of negotiation? Or does all of this fit the old adage, “ A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush”?
For the Bucks it simply might come down to wanting to stay the course with what they have. Why make a big splash for someone who hasn’t seen the court yet? Where is Crowder today?
Jae Crowder, 32 years old, has played eleven seasons in the NBA, averaging 9/6/1 per game in his career. He has never been known as a player to put up amazing numbers. He has a reputation in the NBA as being inconsistent. Per the Sun’s blog, “Bright side of the Sun”, Crowder has been, “ a foul machine”. He also, according to another Suns blog “Valley of the Suns” a “ticking time bomb”.
That might simply be something the Bucks do not want.
This team really seems to have an identity as a group that is veteran, that is consistent, and that works hard.
Crowder seems to be in the position he is in because of a perceived playing time issue. It all started like so many things and issues and dramatic incidents seem to begin: Twitter. The story seems to go that Cam Johnson was preparing to enter the starting line-up. That would push Crowder to the bench. He wasn’t all too happy with that.
Here is the Tweet that seemed to shake the world.
ONE MUST SEEK WORK WHERE HE IS WANTED.. WHERE HE IS NEEDED.! I AM THANKFUL FOR WHAT THESE PAST 2 YRS HAVE TAUGHT ME.! NOW I MUST TAKE ON ANOTHER CHALLENGE WITH CONTINUED HARDWORK & DEDICATION.! FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO CLOSED THE DOOR ON ME…. THANK YOU! 99 BACK SOON.! 🥷🏾🤫🤐
— JAE CROWDER (@CJC9BOSS) September 25, 2022
The irony to all of this is Cam Johnson has been hurt for long stretches of this season. Crowder would have probably started a ton of games anyway.
Really, if the Suns offered Crowder to the Bucks for little in return, say a 2024 second pick, then maybe it becomes much more worth it. But it seems safe to assume that the Bucks did not re-sign Jordan Nwora or give Grayson Allen a 2 yr- $19.5 million dollar contract because they didn’t want him. They value their guys. And right now, get ready for a few hundred more “Crowder to the Bucks” rumors. I just don’t see it happening for a player who is actively sitting out.
There are other moves to make. If Serge Ibaka isn’t the answer as a back-up center, maybe that role is upgraded. If Joe Ingles looks shaky the Bucks will want another shooter.
But for now, with what little analysis I have been able to do (and I don’t want to sell myself too short here) I just don’t see a Crowder trade happening for what members of the media believe.
I guess we’ll be for certain by February 9th.
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